5 Ways To Increase

Hens Party Bookings

Hens party trends are constantly evolving, giving venues a whole new audience to market towards. Boost your hens night enquiries with these 5 expert marketing tips.

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Hens party trends are constantly evolving. The traditional night on the town is getting swapped for more unique hens night ideas. This shift in hens night trend has given venues an opportunity to market to a new audience base. When marketing for a hens night two key things to remember are that you are specifically targeting females and that interests vary greatly so a range of offers should be available.

Function Venue Marketing

1. Hens Party Packages

When developing your hens party marketing strategy, it’s important to consider what types of events your venue can host. Ensure you have a range of packages and options available to suit different tastes. Packages can include:

  • Multi-course menu tasting with wine pairings
  • Set menu with a bar tab or beverage package
  • Private dining experiences
  • Cocktail classes
  • High tea
  • Brunch & mimosas
Hens Party Marketing Ideas

2. Content Marketing

Content marketing involves creating content in the forms of blogs, images and video that promotes relevant and informative content that is related to your business. Create a blogroll with topics such as the following:

  • Classy hens night ideas
  • Unique hens night themes
  • How to throw the best hens night

The articles can also be promoted through social media channels to generate additional traffic. It’s a great way to gather interest from potential event hosts who are at the early stage of the customer journey.

Hens Party Marketing Ideas

3. Facebook Ad Campaigns

Social media is now considered the most reliable source of information by consumers, without a strong social media presence your venue will be overlooked. Facebook’s advertising platform offers businesses a variety of ways to target potential customers and provides the opportunity to target people who are specifically interested in hens parties.

When marketing for hens nights it’s important to consider that your audience is mostly females, and the range of tastes are highly varied, so ensure that your content and images are designed accordingly.

On top of targeting specific areas and age groups, the targeting function enables your ads to be directed to:

  • People who are engaged
  • Friends of people who are engaged
  • People who are bridesmaids
  • People who have expressed interest in bachelorette parties/hens nights
  • People who are getting married
Hens Party Marketing Ideas

4. Google Ad Campaigns

Google is an effective channel for promoting hens parties. There are two key channels for advertising on Google: the display network and the search network. Using keywords that suit your venue and target audience, your ads can be set up to appear as:

  • Banner ads on the display network
  • Banner ads on related sites due to placement targeting
  • Text ads on the google search engine

Using Google ads with correct keywords ensures your venue is placed directly in front of users who are searching for hens party ideas.

Hens Party Marketing Ideas

5. Search Engine Optimisation

The final aspect to consider when marketing your venue is the SEO of your site. Optimising your content for search engines will result in a better placement on Google. By organically boosting your ranking, your visibility to potential clients increases significantly. To ensure your site is correctly optimised, consider the following:

  • Create a page on your website that outlines what your hens party packages are.
  • Metadata is correctly formatted for search engines and has been written to attract attention from people searching for hens party venues.
  • Images are optimised for mobile devices with relevant titles and alt tags.
  • Website content includes phrases and keywords that are used by females who are searching for hens party venues.
  • Website content includes phrases and keywords regarding your local suburb or town to improve ranking as a local venue.
  • Content is regularly updated and well written.
  • Backlinks to your site are in place from relevant websites and directories.

City Guides uses GPS technology to recognise when a user is in a new location. It will then feed the user information about this city including recommended cafes, bars and restaurants.

How Facebook’s City Guides Works

This feature is relatively new so marketers are still trying to get their heads around how it works. What we do know is that the feature uses an algorithm to create personalised recommendations for the user. These recommendations are a combination of where locals frequent and where their friends have previously visited. When the user scrolls through City Guides they can see basic information about each suggestion including a star rating, the number of reviews that have been made about that location, and how many of their friends have visited that particular place. Each recommendation also includes a short summary of what a user can expect when they visit the suggested location. This is created by combining the words people most often use when talking about that venue. This might include things like, ‘great steak lunch’, ‘amazing beers on tap’, and ‘private dining’.

How to use Facebook City Guides

How Can Venues Make The Most Of City Guides

Getting your cafe, bar or restaurant on City Guides is a great way to appeal to the tourist market. Travellers from overseas and interstate are entering your city every day and looking for the best ways to make the most of their stay.

City Guides can offer your business an advantage by telling tourists about your venue the moment they step foot in your city. Unfortunately getting your venue on City Guides is easier said than done.

You can’t pay your way into the feature. At least not yet. Facebook wants to give the user the best possible suggestions relevant to who they are. However, there are a few things you can do to boost your chances of getting on City Guides.

Facebook City Guide

1. Encourage More Facebook Check-Ins

Find fun and creative ways to encourage Check-Ins on your venue’s Facebook page. This might include offering prize incentives such as free coffee or the chance to win a free dining experience at your venue. This has a strong likelihood of boosting your chances of appearing on City Guides as a large part of their recommendations are based on who else has been to that venue.

Facebook Check In

2. Boost Your Reviews

Even before City Guides existed, we knew that reviews are important for businesses on Facebook. Recent statistics show that 90% of consumers read online reviews before visiting a venue. Now with City Guides, reviews, specifically positive reviews, are more crucial than ever.

Facebook city guides page optimisation

3. Optimise Facebook Business Page

Make sure your Facebook Business Page is the best it can be. This means providing as much information about your venue as possible on the business page and making sure it is consistent with the information on your website and other sites. This will help Facebook know that you are a serious business and a reliable recommendation.

Weddings provide restaurant and function venues with a great opportunity to boost revenue. It’s the bride and groom’s special day and many couples want to host an extravagant celebration they will remember for a lifetime. Promoting your restaurant or function space as a wedding venue requires planning, but doing it well can generate large profits for your business.

 

Before you begin a wedding campaign, the following topics need to be considered:

  • Who the main wedding planner will be, the bride or groom? More often than not, it’s the bride who is the key decision maker.
  • Are you promoting your venue as a same-sex wedding venue?
  • You need to consider what types of weddings your venue is best suited for.
  • Do you have ceremony spaces available or are you purely a reception venue?
  • Do you have space for outdoor receptions or just indoors?
  • Can you offer both seated and cocktail receptions?
  • What are your venue capacities?
  • What packages will you offer and at what price points? Most venues offer a range of multi-course set menus, cocktail menus and a buffet option.
  • Will you have food and beverage upgrades available?
Wedding Venue SEO & Marketing Ideas

The number of people searching wedding venues reaches a peak in January each year. As a result your campaign must be up and running by this period. Outside of this period enquiries do drop, in response to this some venues may consider offering incentives to drive enquiries during the middle of the year.

Christmas Function packages

1. Social Media Marketing

The social media presence of a wedding venue has a strong impact on its perceived credibility. Social media is also the platform where a wedding venue can accurately communicate its branding and imaging, attracting brides with similar styles. Your Instagram account should be regularly updated with images of the venue, catering and examples of weddings or events held on location.

The Instagram story tool can be used in a variety of ways, particularly now with the pinned stories function. These pinned stories are another way to showcase your venue and can be used to:

  • Show behind the scene videos of venue styling
  • Highlight previous weddings and functions at your venues
  • Promote deals and incentives
  • Promote upcoming wedding showcases
Wedding Venue SEO & Marketing Ideas

2. Facebook Ad Campaigns

Facebook’s advertising platform offers businesses a variety of ways to target potential brides. The detailed targeting system provides the opportunity to reach people who are specifically interested in weddings or actively looking to plan a wedding.

On top of targeting specific geographic locations, genders and age groups, the following demographics and interests may help your venue to generate more wedding enquiries:

  • Females who are newly engaged (1, 3 and 6 months)
  • Friends of people who are newly engaged
  • People who have set their relationship status to engaged
  • Engaged females who have shown interest in weddings
Wedding venue google ad

3. Google Ad Campaigns

Google is another platform that is effective in driving more leads for your wedding venue. There are two key channels for advertising on Google: the display network and the search network. Using keywords that suit your venue, your ads can be set up to appear as:

  • Banner ads on the display network
  • Banner ads on related sites due to placement targeting
  • Text ads on the google search engine

Using Google ads with correct keywords ensures your venue is placed directly in front of users who are searching for wedding venues and reception ideas.

Wedding venue open day

4. Wedding Open Day

Wedding open days are an excellent form of experiential marketing. This is an influential way to convert potential clients who are in the process of planning their wedding.

Open days will give you an opportunity to partner with industry suppliers who will further promote your business to their networks. These suppliers may include photographers, stylists, makeup artists, celebrants and entertainers.

Incentives can be used to drive attendance for your wedding open day. These incentives could include package upgrades, discounted services from suppliers or venue hire offers. Exclusive promotions can be provided to couples who attend the open day. These offers can expire within a set timeframe following the open day to encourage bookings from potential brides.

Data from the open day registration forms can then be used to re-target customers with follow up EDMs or digital marketing campaigns.

Wedding Venue SEO & Marketing Ideas

5. Wedding Directories

Adding your venue to wedding directories will help you to get in front of brides and grooms who are actively searching for wedding venues online. Most directories already rank highly in search engines and have their own databases, which will help to drive traffic to your venue. On top of this, having multiple backlinks to your site from relevant, high-quality wedding directories will help boost your own SEO.

Wedding Venue SEO & Marketing Ideas

6. Collaborative Photoshoots

Staged photo shoots are an excellent way to promote your venue. Collaboration with suppliers, stylists, florists, designers and models will provide your venue with a library of images that can then be shared across media channels of all brands involved.

Wedding Venue SEO

7. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

The final aspect to consider when marketing your venue is the Search Engine Optimisation of your website. Optimising your content for search engines will result in a better placement on Google and other important search engines. Boosting your organic rankings will lead to improved visibility from brides and grooms.

To ensure your website is correctly optimised, consider the following:

  • Metadata is correctly formatted for search engines and has been written to attract attention from people searching for wedding venues.
  • Images are optimised for mobile devices with relevant titles and alt tags.
  • Website content includes phrases and keywords that are used by brides who are searching for wedding venues.
  • Content is regularly updated and well written.
  • Backlinks to the site are in place from relevant websites and directories.

Demand for Christmas enquiries begins to build in June and peaks in October. Most large, corporate events are booked around June – July so your marketing campaign for the Christmas period needs to be in place by then.

It’s important you consider what types of Christmas parties you can cater for based on the size, location and facilities of your venue. Is your event space equipped for large corporate events, or would your venue be better suited to intimate dining between family and friends? Answering these questions will help to determine who your target audience is and what type of messaging will be effective across your campaigns.

Here’s five marketing tips to help your event venue generate more function enquiries or restaurant bookings this Christmas.

Christmas Function packages

1. Festive Packages

Potential customers want a venue that can provide them with festive options that can be booked easily. We suggest offering a festive themed dining menu and a separate cocktail party menu, both provided at a set price per person. Beverage menus and theming packages should be designed so they can be easily ordered by the customer.

Wedding Venue SEO & Marketing Ideas

2. Facebook Ad Campaigns

Facebook’s advertising platform offers restaurants and function venues a variety of ways to generate bookings and reservations for Christmas.

The detailed advertising system will allow your venue to target people who are specifically interested in Christmas parties or have been actively looking to plan one, in both corporate and private settings.

On top of choosing specific areas and age groups, the ad manager enables your ads to target corporate customers based on a range of demographics. If you’re looking to generate bookings for corporate Christmas parties, consider testing some of the following combinations for your advertisement campaign:

  • Job titles: Corporate employees whose job description would involve organizing office Christmas parties
  • Small business owners
  • Employment industry: Administration services, legal, real

 

Facebook can also customise ads for potential customers interested in private family Christmas parties with targeting options that include:

  • Age groups – older members if the family who normally organise Christmas events
  • Parents
  • People who have liked or interacted with your venue’s facebook page
  • People who have viewed content on your website that is relevant to Christmas
Christmas venue Google Ads

3. Google Ad Campaigns

Google is another platform that can help generate Christmas enquiries for your restaurant or function venue.

There are two key platforms for advertising on Google: the display network and the search network. Using keywords that suit your venue and target audience, your ads can be set up to appear as:
Banner ads on the display network
Banner ads on related sites due to placement targeting
Text ads on the google search engine

Careful management of Google advertisements will ensure your website is put in front of people who are searching for Christmas party venues and ideas.

Christmas function venue marketing SEO

4. Content Marketing

Create a series of blog articles with topics that may help your customers to plan their Christmas party. Consider the following topics:

  • Top 5 Christmas party ideas
  • Christmas party themes for 2018
  • Festive menu ideas to inspire your Christmas luncheon

You can then plug your own venue into these articles as one of the ideas on the list. The articles can be filled with relevant keywords and the content can be sent to customers on your database. The articles can also be promoted through social media channels and across platforms as informative blogs. It’s a way to gather interest from potential customers who are at the early stage of the buying cycle.

Christmas function venue marketing SEO

5. Search Engine Optimisation

Applying the best practices of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) to your website will help to boost your venue’s visibility in Google and major search channels. This should be done for keywords that are relevant to Christmas parties, functions and events.

It’s important to consider the following steps when optimising your website for the festive season:

  • Use a free tool such as Google’s Keyword Planner to find out what keywords people are using to find Christmas function venues in your local area.
  • Create a page on your website to promote your Christmas function packages, venue hire facilities and availability of key dates throughout the festive season.
  • Make sure that your website’s metadata written to attract people searching for keywords relating to Christmas parties.
  • Ensure that images on your website are mobile friendly with correct titles and alt tags.
  • Write content that contains keywords relevant to Christmas functions.
  • Reach out to local publications and relevant websites who may potentially share your Christmas offerings with their audiences.

Engagement party trends are constantly changing. Newly engaged couples are looking to host events with a difference and many young couples are paying for engagement parties themselves which means the range in budgets is varied. When marketing for engagement parties be sure to include a variety of options that can be tailored to each couple’s tastes and price range.

We’ve put together a range of ideas to help generate more enquiries for engagement parties at your event venue.

Wedding Venue Marketing Ideas

1. Engagement Party Packages

When marketing your venue for engagement parties be sure to include engagement party packages in your marketing campaign. Engagement party trends are always changing so ensure you have a range of packages and options available to suit different tastes. Packages can include:

  • Multi-course menu tasting with wine pairings
  • Set menu with a bar tab or beverage package
  • Private dining experiences
  • Buffets and shared banquets
  • Canapés and cocktails
Engagement Party Marketing Ideas

2. Content Marketing

Content marketing involves creating content in the forms of blogs, images and video that promotes relevant and informative content related to your business. Create a blogroll with topics such as the following:

  • Engagement party themes and styling ideas
  • Engagement party etiquette
  • How to handle the inlaws
  • Tips for planning your engagement party

You can then plug your own venue into these articles as one of the ideas on the list. The articles can be filled with relevant keywords to attract traffic from search engines. The articles can also be promoted through social media channels and across platforms as informative blogs. It’s a way to gather interest from potential customers who are at the early stage of the buying cycle.

Engagement Party Marketing Ideas

3. Facebook Ad Campaigns

Social media is now considered the most reliable source of information by consumers, without a strong social media presence your venue will be overlooked. Facebook’s advertising platform offers businesses a variety of ways to target potential customers. The detailed targeting system provides the opportunity to target people who are specifically interested in engagement parties. When developing your engagement party marketing strategy, it’s important to consider the budgets and range of tastes are highly varied so ensure content and images are designed accordingly

On top of targeting specific areas and age groups, the targeting function enables your ads to be directed to:

  • People who are engaged
  • Friends of people who are engaged
  • People who are bridesmaids
Engagement Party Marketing Ideas

4. Google Ad Campaigns

Google is another viable platform to advertise your venue on. There are two key platforms for advertising on Google: the display network and the search network. Using keywords that suit your venue and target audience, your ads can be set up to appear as:

  • Banner ads on the display network
  • Banner ads on related sites due to placement targeting
  • Text ads on the Google search engine

Using Google ads with correct keywords ensures your venue is placed directly in front of users who are searching for engagement party ideas.

Engagement Party Marketing Ideas

5. Search Engine Optimisation

The final aspect to consider when marketing your venue is the SEO of your site. Optimising your content for search engines will result in a better placement on Google. By organically boosting your keyword rankings, your visibility to aspiring couples increases significantly, which results in higher enquiry rates for engagement parties. To ensure your site is correctly optimised, consider the following:

  • Create an engagement party landing page for your website
  • Metadata is correctly formatted for search engines nad has been written to attract attention from people searching for engagement party venues.
  • Images are optimised for mobile devices with relevant titles and alt tags
  • Website content includes phrases and keywords that are used by females who are searching for engagement party venues.
  • Website content includes phrases and keywords regarding your local suburb or town to improve ranking as a local venue
  • Content is regularly updated and well written
  • Backlinks to your site are in place from relevant websites and directories.

From the soft gradients of 2015 that brought about a sense of depth, to the all-out exotic and saturated hues seen in 2017, gradients are now set to become a more natural element of design.

Hailed as ‘Gradient 2.0’ within the Behance community, gradients seem to be here to stay. Unlike previous years, gradients will not just dominate the foreground; they will be incorporated into all aspects of design, including backgrounds, typography, image overlays, illustrations, logos, icons and more.

Many big name brands, including Instagram, Spotify and Skype, have already embraced the gradient trend of 2018 to make bold statements and add more depth and dimension to their brands. By creatively using gradients, these brands have been able to create something that feels new, yet looks unique, modern and refreshing, to keep their brand fresh and relevant.

As you can see, gradients are a simple, yet effective tool in creating eye-catching, memorable designs, particularly when executed well. To achieve the perfect gradient, we’ve compiled a list of best practices.

  • Don’t overdo it
    The best way to create an appealing gradient is to keep it simple. Most gradients are created using two colours, so try using no more than three colours.
  • Avoid conflicting colours
    Use a colour wheel to find the perfect analogous, monochromatic, triad, complementary, compound or shade colours for your gradient.
  • Always decide on a light source
    This will help determine where the lighter and darker areas will appear in the gradient.
  • Add a gradient that suits your shape
    For square or polygonal areas, it is best to apply a linear gradient. For more rounded areas, radial gradients are better suited.
  • Always have separate shapes for the fill colour and gradient colour
    This will allow you to apply a gradient over an existing colour and experiment with different opacity to create different effects.

As pressure builds on event venue marketing teams to meet strict sales targets, cutting edge marketing strategies and long term objectives become less of a priority.

Based on our experience working with Australia’s leading function venues, we’ve assembled this list of event venue marketing ideas to help increase your enquiry rate by as much as 200%.

1. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO): Target Local & Niche Event Types

Major changes have occurred to Search Engines Results Pages (SERPS) over the past 12 months. As competition between function venues increases and the organic (i.e free) space offered by search engines decreases, many venue marketers may begin to assume that SEO is dead.

Despite recent changes, traffic from organic search engines is still the largest driver of enquiries across our entire portfolio of clients. SEO is not dead, the way that you’re doing it might be.
While most generic keywords relating to function and event venues i.e “Function Venue in Brisbane” are highly competitive, there’s still plenty of opportunity for venues to rank highly for niche event types.

Venue marketers who are looking for a DIY SEO solution for existing websites may find some gains in rankings can be achieved through basic ‘On-page optimisation’. This includes customising a website’s page titles, descriptions, image alt tags and headlines.
Venue marketers who want to accelerate through the rankings may also look to create optimised landing pages for each event type.

Venue Marketing Ideas

Expert Tip

While these updates may help to create some improvements in search engine rankings, this sort of cookie-cutter approach to SEO is unlikely to generate position 1 results.

A holistic approach to SEO that incorporates quality content and authoritative backlinks is essential for function venues who want to increase their enquiry rate.

2. Local Directory Submission: Upload & Claim Your Listings

Australian business directories not only provide great SEO value, these online services have the potential to generate quality traffic for your website.

Local directory services play a major role in local SEO, as they help Google to gain a better understanding of where your business is located and the types of services or catering that your venue offers.

Local directories should be kept up to date with consistent contact details including business name, address and phone number. Unique descriptions and correct business classifications (i.e Function Centre or Wedding Venue) will help your function venue to generate more traffic.

Venue Marketing Ideas

Expert Tip

Most local directories offer a free listing, premium listings are also available for additional costs. A list of the top 20 Australia Business Directories can be found below.

 

The Top 20 Australian Business Directories

  • www.yellowpages.com.au
  • www.truelocal.com.au
  • www.yelp.com.au
  • www.hotfrog.com.au
  • www.startlocal.com.au
  • www.womo.com.au
  • www.aussieweb.com.au
  • dlook.com.au
  • www.localstore.com.au
  • www.localbusinessguide.com.au
  • www.yalwa.com.au
  • www.localbd.com.au
  • www.superpages.com.au
  • www.businesslistings.net.au
  • www.comeonaussie.com
  • www.local.com.au
  • www.yellowbook.com.au
  • www.raveaboutit.com.au
  • www.shopseek.com.au
  • www.companylist.com.au

3. Social Media Marketing: Develop A Content Schedule

A wide range of social media channels are available for event venues, our suggested channels include Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and LinkedIn. The key to choosing the right social media channels for your event venue comes through profiling your target audiences.

A one-page social media strategy should outline publishing times, hashtags and topics. A simple social media strategy like this will help to ensure that the correct messaging is being delivered to the right audiences.

Venue Marketing Ideas

Expert Tip

Venues who are in need of social media content ideas may look to provide reference to other suppliers in their industry. Wedding venues may provide value through inspirational event styling ideas, while corporate function venues could try posting motivational content relevant to team building and planning sessions.

4. Content Marketing: Create an Editorial Calendar

Plan your content using an editorial calendar. Map out key dates, seasonal events and peak enquiry periods, then decide what content should be published in advance to these dates.

Your content marketing strategy could include blog posts about the team, case studies featuring successful events, inspirational style guides, industry trends, or lists featuring important event planning tips.

We suggest planning at least 3 months ahead with your upcoming content.

Venue Marketing Ideas

Expert Tip

Include a column for target keywords within your content marketing calendar. This may help your event venue generate more traffic through Search Engine Optimisation.

5. Pay Per Click Campaigns: Advanced Targeting

Pay Per Click (PPC) campaigns provide event venues with laser targeting for local audiences. Popular PPC channels include Google Adwords, Bing, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.

These channels enable venues to target people who have particular interests, demographics and locations. Some Pay Per Click channels allow advertisers to target people who have recently visited your website, or users who are subscribed to your email database.

When choosing the most appropriate PPC channels for your event venue, it’s important to consider where your target audiences are spending their time online. For example, corporate function venues may generate leads for conferences and seminars through LinkedIn, while Instagram has proven to be an effective source of enquiries for wedding venues. Facebook’s Advertisement manager provides a wide range of birthday targeting options that can help event venues to drill down on specific age groups.

Venue Marketing Ideas

Expert Tip

Is Adwords too expensive for your event venue marketing strategy? Bing’s advertisement platform offers the same keyword targeting features for a fraction of Google’s price.

6. Print Advertisements: Calculate Your ROI

It may not be as easy to draw a direct correlation between print advertisements and incoming revenue, so it’s important to consider how you will measure the impact of your print advertisements. For some event venues, it may be as simple as asking your leads “How did you hear about us?”

Establishing a clear understanding of where your enquiries are coming from is key to determining which print publications will provide a return on your investment.

Venue Marketing Ideas

Expert Tip

Some publications can provide an option to combine full page advertisements with a editorial/advertorial feature. Further to this, you may be able to combine print advertisements with a digital inclusion.

7. Database Segmentation & Email Marketing

It can be argued that your database is the most important asset to your event venue. The right combination of segmentation and auto-responders has the potential to create significant improvements in conversion rates for potential clients.

Segmentation of email databases will provide function venues with opportunities to encourage repeat bookings. This is particularly important for venues that want to drive more enquiries for corporate functions or birthday parties. Venues may also use email marketing to acknowledge important anniversary dates or personal milestones.

Most venue marketers may not have time to craft separate email responses for each individual event or enquiry. That’s where automation comes in.

Most EDM products provide a seemingly infinite number of ways to automate emails. Our experience indicates that venues are twice as likely to convert leads when emails are sent within 7 days following an initial function enquiry.

The content within these emails will help to establish a relationship with the potential event host and should be relevant to the type of event that the user has enquired about. Venue marketers may also choose to include event planning tips, answers to frequently asked questions and a direct link to the functions package.

Venue Marketing Ideas

Expert Tip

When combined with EDM campaigns, email retargeting through social media operates an effective ‘double whammy’, since custom email audiences can be refined to specific users who have demonstrated interest in email campaigns. For example, function venues can create a custom audience that consists of users who opened an email, or users who clicked on a specific link about an event category.

8. Function Venue Showcases & Open Days

A range of different formats are available for function venues including showcases, famils, venue launches or menu launches.

An effective showcase will help familiarise guests, media and suppliers with the venue, catering and facilities. You may choose to inspire the guests imagination with styling and theming appropriate for your target audience. This is particularly important for wedding venues and corporate function rooms.

These events will provide an opportunity for venue managers to collaborate with other professionals within the industry, which may also help to drive referrals and traffic to your venue.

Venue Marketing Ideas

Expert Tip

A post event email follow up may help to convert enquiries into sales. Ask attendees to provide their email address and ensure a triggered email campaign is scheduled for no more than 24 hours following the event.

9. Build Partnerships with Industry Suppliers

Referral schemes and arrangements with preferred suppliers are often one of the leading enquiry sources for most function venues.

When assembling your list of preferred suppliers, think about what additional services your clients may require in the lead up to their event.

Venue Marketing Ideas

Expert Tip

Corporate function venues may require stylists, photographers, AV & equipment, entertainment and motivational speakers.

Wedding venues may also leverage off local businesses including dress makers, tailors, jewellery stores, florists and beauty salons.

10. Host A Networking Event

Similar to showcases and open days, networking events provide guests with first hand experience of your function venue. Some networking coordinators may host an event in exchange for free or discounted venue hire.

Venue Marketing Ideas

Expert Tip

Venues looking to host more networking events may try outreach to businesses who host conferences at major convention centres. The schedule of upcoming conferences is usually available online.

Developing a marketing strategy for your function venue often requires a steep learning curve. But once you get rolling, the strategy can be easily scaled upwards. That means you can spend more time focusing on the important stuff: catering for your clients.

As Australia’s leading marketing agency for function venues and events services, we’ve compiled a guide to help you assemble your 2017 marketing strategy. This guide is based on our experience in marketing for a wide range of Australia’s top function venues and includes actionable tips to boost your function enquiry rate by as much as 200%.

How To Create A Marketing Strategy for Your Event Venue

A few steps need to be taken before we dive into our marketing campaign. It’s important to set clear goals, identify your audience and set up measurements for success. Each of these points have been outlined below in greater detail.

Venue Marketing Ideas

1. Determine the types of events your venue wants to host

A clear understanding of your preferred event categories will enable you to profile the types of people who are most likely to make a function enquiry.

Assess your venue’s capabilities and determine which event types are best suited to your function spaces. Most events types can be classified according to three major categories: weddings, corporate and private events.

Weddings

  • Wedding Receptions
  • Wedding Ceremonies
  • Engagement Parties

Corporate

  • Networking events
  • Conferences
  • Seminars
  • EOFY
  • Christmas functions

Private Parties & Celebrations

  • Birthday parties
  • Hens nights
  • Bucks parties
  • High Tea

People within each of these major categories usually share similar demographics. For example, people looking for wedding venues are likely to be females who are engaged. Corporate function enquiries are often made by people who are employed in corporate industries and their job descriptions may include ‘Event Managers’ or Social Convenors’.

Your marketing strategy should aim to communicate directly with each audience depending on their interests, needs and demographics.

Expert Tip

Brides are aren’t interested in hosting weddings at ‘corporate’ venues and corporate event hosts are less inclined to host conferences at ‘wedding venues’. Most function venues can be adapted to cater for both event categories, so it’s important that each audience receives messaging that is specific to their interests.

Venue Marketing Ideas

2. Define your marketing goals and create measurements for success

When setting goals for your business, it’s important to remember that function enquiries can be received across a range of channels, including phone calls, emails, website enquiry forms, social media and more.

Some event types are more likely to enquire through particular channels whether it’s online or offline. Events with longer lead-time may be likely to enquire via email or online forms – whereas events with short lead-time are likely to reach straight for the phone.

Expert Tip

Measuring your campaign performance involves tracking enquiries across online and offline channels. Venues looking to achieve the best results from their marketing strategy must be able to do the following:

  • Track the source of each function enquiry through analytics tools
  • Monitor the journey of each customer through Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software

3. Devise a clear marketing budget

When planning your marketing budget, it’s important to remember that some event types require up to six communication touch points before an initial enquiry is made. Spending your entire budget on one form of media may not be appropriate for all venues.

The type of marketing strategy that you employ is affected by the budget that you can afford. Some forms of marketing, including broadcast or print media, are more expensive than others.

A monthly marketing budget should include costs for the creation of regular website content, photography, video, graphic design, email marketing and advertisements (online and print).

 

Expert Tip

Venues looking to keep costs to a minimum may benefit from digital marketing, including search engine optimisation or online advertisements through Google Adwords and Facebook. These platforms allow businesses to advertise their services for as little as $5 per day.

4. Review your marketing efforts and optimise your marketing campaign

Your marketing report should indicate which enquiries are converting and provide an estimate of the cost per acquisition for each event category. A consistent, monthly review process will help to eliminate wasted spend so that you can capture more enquiries for your function venue.

A range of free reporting tools are available to help you review your marketing efforts. These tools can provide comprehensive reports that indicate the exact number of phone calls, emails or enquiry form submissions were made through your website each month.

 

Expert Tip

Two essential components should be included in your monthly marketing review:

  • Breakdown of Enquiries by Event Type
    Create a spreadsheet with that provides a breakdown of enquiries categories by event type. Include one column for all enquiries and a second column for all converted enquiries. A third column should indicate what percentage of enquiries were converted into sales.
  • Cost per acquisition/Cost Per Enquiry
    An estimate of the marketing costs spent for each enquiry. For example each wedding enquiry could cost $20 in Facebook advertisements.

Despite being reported by Google Engineer Matt Cutts as a “minor change”, this update opened the door for major brands to become more prominent within the search results.

SEO experts believe that the long-term implications of this minor update have had a profound effect on the search results, as this allowed established brands to employ SEO tactics such as private link networks that would normally result in a red flag from Google.

In his article, How 16 Companies are Dominating the World’s Google Search Results, Glen Allsopp explains how 16 companies have grown to dominate the world’s search results. Their domination of the search results affects all major consumer industries including cosmetics, gaming, whitegoods, technology, music, finance and more.

Allsopp believes that the domination of search results by major brands is going to get much worse as each company plans to spread their online presence across their own private link networks.

See More: Read the Full Article

Venue Marketing Ideas

Facebook’s advertisement platform offers advertisers with a range of ways to target people in specific age groups, users with upcoming birthdays and their closest friends.

Demographics can be combined to enable function venues to speak directly to users with upcoming milestones including 21st and 30th birthday parties.

This article contains four ways to target upcoming birthdays on Facebook. The strategies listed below may be combined or tweaked with alternative demographics to help generate more enquiries for your function venue.

4 Ways to Target Birthdays Through Facebook Advertisements

1. Target Users with Upcoming Birthdays

Perhaps one of the most obvious methods of targeting birthdays through Facebook advertisements, this setting includes all users who are set to celebrate their birthday within 0-7 days.

 

Facebook Advertisement Manager Targeting Settings

Demographics > Life Events > Birthday > Upcoming Birthday

This targeting option is effective for businesses looking to provide small incentives to users with upcoming birthdays including restaurant specials and promotional codes, however this option may not provide enough time for the user to commit to a larger purchase such as a function venue booking.

2. Target Users with Birthdays in Specific Months of the Year

The targeting of users with birthdays in specific months of the year is one Facebook’s advertisement manager’s newer targeting options. Months can be targeted individually for specific messaging, or combined for advertisers looking to reach a larger audiences.

 

Facebook Advertisement Manager Targeting Settings

Demographics > Life Events > Birthday > Birthday Month

This is a powerful targeting feature since it provides advertisers with the ability to speak directly to users about their upcoming birthday.

This option gives advertisers the opportunity to target users several months prior to an upcoming birthday, which provides the user with plenty of time to take some form of action.

3. Target Users With A Specific Age

Facebook advertisement manager can be used to target users who are a specific age. This feature may be effective for advertisers looking to reach audiences who are set to celebrate a specific milestone, including 18th birthdays, 21st birthdays or 30th birthdays.

Facebook Advertisement Manager Targeting Settings

Age: Select the same variables

Once again, this option may not provide enough lead time for some users to take action (see point 1), so for best results, try combining milestone age groups with the target of users whose birthdays fall within specific months of the year (see point 2).

4. Target Close Friends of People With An Upcoming Birthdays

Word of mouth is said to be the original social media platform and recommendations from friends and family are arguably the most influential.

This targeting option could potentially encourage friends to recommend products, services or function venues to users with upcoming birthdays.

 

Facebook Advertisement Manager Targeting Settings

Demographics > Life Events > Friends of

A range of additional targeting setting are available with this feature. For example, advertisers can refine their targeting to reach only males or females. Alternatively, advertisers can target users who are set to celebrate their birthday in either 0-7 days or 7-30 days.

This option does not allow users to drill down on users who are set to turn a specific age, for example we cannot target close friends people who are set to celebrate a 21st birthday. Advertisers may narrow their targeting by showing the advertisement to users who are aged 20.